What is an MRI machine and why is hospital staff responsible for Rajesh Maru's death
Rajesh Maru died at Nair Hospital in Mumbai on Saturday night after getting sucked into Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine. Maru was holding the oxygen cylinder for the mother-in-law while she was scheduled to undergo the MRI scan. Since the machine was on, the strong magnetic field of MRI scanner sucked Maru in and he got trapped between the oxygen cylinder he was holding and the MRI machine. The injuries led to his death.
What is an MRI machine?
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner uses a magnetic field and pulses of radio wave energy to make pictures of organs and structures that are inside the body. MRI scanners use strong magnetic fields, electric field gradients, and radio waves to generate images of the organs in the body. MRI is widely used in hospitals and clinics for medical diagnosis, staging of disease and follow-up without exposing the body to ionizing radiation. To perform a study, the person is positioned within an MRI scanner that forms a strong magnetic field around the area to be imaged. In most medical applications, protons (hydrogen atoms) in tissues containing water molecules create a signal that is processed to form an image of the body.
The major components of an MRI scanner are: the main magnet, which polarizes the sample, the shim coils for correcting inhomogeneities in the main magnetic field, the gradient system which is used to localize the MR signal and the RF system, which excites the sample and detects the resulting NMR signal. The whole system is controlled by one or more computers.
Why is hospital staff responsible for Maru's death?
Since MRI machines generate a strong magnetic field, no metal objects are allowed near it. Hospital staff are trained to ensure this. In Maru's case, when he came close to the machine, he was allowed to carry an oxygen cylinder which is made of metal. Secondly, the machine was on even before the scan was to begin.
Maru's relative blamed the hospital authorities' negligence for his death.
"He went there to visit my ailing mother. A ward boy told him to carry an oxygen cylinder with him to MRI room which is prohibited. It all happened because of the carelessness of hospital's doctors and administration. No security guard was either present to tell him that he should not carry oxygen cylinder with him to MRI room," Maru's brother-in-law, Harish Solanki told news agency ANI.
"As he entered the room the MRI machine sucked him in due to the magnetic force as he had oxygen cylinder with him. He died within two minutes. No hospital authority has approached us accepting their mistake," he added.
This clearly shows that either the staff of the Nair hospital were not well trained or they were negligent which led to this incident.
Even the police have said that the ward boy or doctor should have told the family to not take oxygen cylinder close to the machine.